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When getting ready for a date, keep in mind that even though you are a great mom, tonight you are an attractive, feminine, sexy woman, and your goal is to feel as pretty as you can. I do get it that kids are a huge part of a single mom’s life, but just remember that there’s a lot more to you than being a mom. They will meet him eventually, if you end up getting serious. Don’t constantly talk about how hard it is being a single mom. So, no need to talk about how you were carpooling all night, or that you are working two jobs, or that your ex rarely sees the kids. So, don’t expect to hear how great you are from anyone.

Below is an email I received from a woman seeking advice.Her concern is that if she starts dating, her ex is going to badmouth her to the guys.Here are ten things I’ve learned about how to do just that. Instead, treat online dating for what it is: an invaluable way to learn about yourself and what you want in a partner, love, and sex. Do not start off with a mile-long list of “I’m looking for” qualities. Dating outside your type — especially if your type hasn’t worked out — will give you a sense of who you are as a single person, without the pressure of “is this the one? You’ll feel sexy knowing you’re sporting black lace boy shorts under your jeans, whether or not a guy sees them.Not only are you likely to scare people off, but you also run the risk of alienating people with your high maintenance-ness. Think of lingerie as self-care, a way of honoring yourself as a woman. Have a first date uniform Have at least one outfit pre-selected, one that you know you look good in, so you’re not scrambling through your closet at the last minute trying to figure out what to wear.And this is a woman who really wants to meet someone. If you want to complain about your ex, call your girlfriends, tell your therapist or journal your feelings. This is where not being selfish has to come into play. So, just go in with that attitude and you can’t lose!

In other words, she wasn’t just there to see her girlfriends. I could go on and on about what a great basketball player my 13 year old son is, or how cute my 11 year-old daughter’s smile is, and think nothing of it. A date is about getting to know each other, so try to focus on asking the guy questions about himself and his life and sharing information about yourself. Enjoy the new relationship for yourself and give your kids a break. And, chances are, if your date is a single dad, he knows that, too.

There have been weekends when I’ve done just that, but there have also been long stretches when I’ve dated up a storm.

Dating in my 50s turned out to be much more fun than dating three decades ago.

You’re a big girl and you’re capable of making your own decisions about sex. Detach from the outcome With dating, as with life, you should focus on the journey, not the destination. Don’t feel pressured to have sex before you’re ready, or a relationship in which you settle.

Don’t worry about your wrinkle lines, your imperfect past, or your ex.

I decided to give her advice by writing “10 Single Mom Dating Tips.” Jackie, I’m wondering if you can write about dating as a single mom when your ex is especially difficult.